Aero Engines:

1. Decide the broad parameters of the jet engine you wants in consultation with IAF, publish the parameters, and invite research & development proposals from people like HAL, L&T, Tatas, etc for design & development of a prototype, one of which will be selected.
2. The developer/bidder must estimate cost, informed by cost per unit of competing global models, as a part of the bid. Of the bidders the best two will be selected for Govt support with funding of their proposed models.

They tell govt total cost of development + unit cost.
3. The competing bidders will be offered 75% of the cost of R&D and prototype for testing model. 25% to be borne by them. If promo-type pass tests, each will get a bonus another 75% of the cost to total 150%.

The prototypes will then go into production mode 4 final selection.
4. At this stage both bidders will develop 4 to 6 prototype for testing & final runoff. The same 75% + 25% + 75& payment model will be used to the production model. One of which will be selected for production.
5. After final selection the manufacturing contract will go to 100% to the winner but with the provision that 25% of the subsystems by value must come from the runner up.

Thus you preserve technical skills of both. As soon as R&D work is over, follow up with another project.
6. None of this is rocket science. So why haven’t we used this model for technical R&D. The reason is 2 fold. Firstly we give DRDO a chokehold on all research. That is an organization dedicated to preserving its own jobs. Research happens by accident, not design.
7. Second is that the AF don’t really trust DRDO on quality and reliability. DRDO’s track record here is terrible except in a few areas like space. They prefer imports to save lives & reliable capabilities. So we get worst of both worlds.
First, at the R&D stage, DRDO swipes all the research funding in the the name strategic reliance. The Ads know the game but cannot object being “patriotic” people. DRDO delivers shoddy product decades later. AFs meanwhile say need urgent now.
9. Citing this or that emergency AFs glamour for imports. Sometimes a via media is struck. Like buy Raffale but order some LACs. Or import T90s but buy a few Arjuns for show.

But India gets rammed with double whammy.
It has wasted time - decades of it - passing the research money to DRDO, with no competition, 4 a shoddy product. Having wasted time and money, the AFs have their own way and import the stuff anyway. So we pay twice for research - DRDO & Dassault abroad - and get no R&D for it.
The science & technology bureaucracy is happy preserving jobs. The military bureaucracy is happy at being left of the hook and getting the imported stuff. MoD gets stuffed by 2X the cost of the product.

But none of it percolates to IITs, universities & labs to preserve skills.

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More from @sonaliranade

15 Sep
“Our analysis shows that India will require at least $8 trillion of cumulative gross capital formation to grow into a $5 trillion economy, assuming we are on the fastest growth track. …”…

This is precisely what I write-in my essay on the Indian economy.
“…. attracting greater FDI into seven capital-intensive sectors —textile & apparel, food processing industry, electronic goods, pharmaceuticals, vehicles & parts, chemicals & API, and capital goods that have contributed $181 billion of merchandise exports in 2020-21.
“20% of GDP, or some $600 billion must come through FDI or FPI, since domestic sources have been exhausted by Government borrowings + local investment demand.  For scale & perspective, note existing FDI + FPI barely touch $100 billion a year.”…
Read 6 tweets
13 Sep

A device like the one used in #Slaughterbots movie here, can be built by a hobbyist for less that $1000.

@pravinsawhney has been warning us like a man possessed but typical of us to mock him, rather than study the problem.
“These “slaughterbots” are not merely the stuff of fiction. One such drone nearly killed the president of Venezuela in 2018, & could be built today by an experienced hobbyist for less than $1,000. All of the parts are available 4 purchase online, & all open-source technologies”
“ .. such as how to form swarms with teamwork and redundancy, making their missions virtually unstoppable. A swarm of 10,000 drones that could wipe out half a city could theoretically cost as little as $10 million.”
Read 5 tweets
13 Sep
I usually don’t watch videos. But this exposition of a possible change in the primary strategic direction of China through Ladakh & Kashmir in tandem with Pakistan, vy @PravinSawhney makes terrific sense & is a must watch.

I am generally shy of talking or writing on strategic issues b/c it leads to speculation that I find distasteful.

But I have said 2 things [a] 2 Navies face to face cannot go to war with each other. So Taiwan is a stalemate [2] Kashmir is the heart of the old & new silk route.
I also think QUAD is hot air. There is no military or strategic alliance that US has forged in the past which did not include a very substantial economic upgrade for the country joining an alliance. We don’t even have a trade deal. Nor is 1 possible given Modi’s poor economics.
Read 5 tweets
31 Jul
Modi’s #AcheDin: #Olympics since 2014.

Modi made a big show and dance about reviving manufacturing. Here is the truth.

He has beaten Pakistan as yet he is on track. Mind it. What Olympic medal to give Modi?
#AcheDin: Modi promised to create millions of jobs through manufacturing and Industry.

Here is the truth:

Modi promised to double farmers’ income. Here is the truth.

The small uptick in Agriculture after 2019 id mainly due to a 50% rise in global prices & has nothing to do with Modi.
Read 15 tweets
31 Jul
“In its Democracy Report 2020, Sweden’s V-Dem Institute noted that India “has almost lost its status as a democracy”. It ranked India below Sierra Leone, Guatemala and Hungary.”

“It’s the rejection of the dogma that things can’t be changed because they’re “naturally” fixed in stone. Democracy is thus insubordination: The refusal to put up with everyday forms of snobbery and toad-eating, idolatry and lying, bulls**t and bullying.”
“They make careless, foolish, and incompetent decisions that reinforce social inequities. They license big market and government players — poligarchs — to decide things.”

Spot on Prof John Keane. Farm Bills come out of such a process.
Read 4 tweets
30 Jul
“Amit Shah, of course, is not the first provincial politician from the “mainland” to think that the north-easterners can be made to fall in a neat line, … but he is indeed the first politician who has turned ignorance and arrogance into an axiom of statecraft.”
“Yet the much-feared Modi-Shah team cannot bring about a change of leadership in Lucknow. The good yogi has got of the measure of the fearsome duo. Not only that, the prime minister has been forced to sing hymns in praise of the blundering Yogi regime.”

Harish Khare plain-speak.
“From Shillong to Dehradun and Bengaluru to Lucknow, the cumulative evidence reminds us once again of how inherently over-rated the Shahenshah and Shah arrangement is. There is a certain inevitability about these deficiencies and delinquencies.”
Read 7 tweets

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